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NET Power recently announced the receipt of a £4.9 million grant from the UK Department of Energy and Climate Change as part of the Carbon Capture and Sequestration (CCS) Innovation Program £20 Million Competition. The grant will fund further R&D and manufacturing of both developing and proven high-performance materials that enable NET Power's novel, clean, low-cost power generation technology to reach extremely high efficiencies.
NET Power's new fossil fuel-based power technology is low-cost and highly efficient, on par with state-of-the-art natural gas combined cycle plants. In addition to generating electricity at competitive costs, NET Power also eliminates all atmospheric emissions, including CO2 by utilizing a novel, oxy-fuel, high-pressure, supercritical carbon dioxide thermodynamic cycle named the Allam Cycle after lead inventor Rodney Allam of Chippenham, England.
The Allam Cycle is a flexible platform technology that spans natural gas, coal, solar, nuclear, enhanced oil recovery (EOR) and liquefied natural gas applications, each of which will directly address rising electricity costs while enabling aggressive emissions reduction targets to be met. DECC's grant supports NET Power to lay the foundation for a coal development program that will result in lower-cost coal-fired power generation that eliminates all atmospheric emissions of CO2, SOX, NOX and particulates.
NET Power is different from typical carbon capture technologies, which require the addition of new processes and equipment to current power systems. NET Power’s new power generation technology is designed from the ground up to eliminate air emissions. The resulting system produces low-cost electricity and a pipeline-ready CO2 byproduct that can be sequestrated or used in enhanced oil recovery without requiring additional expenses and processes.
The system can produce substantially pure CO2 at pipeline pressure for sequestration. A wide variety of fuel sources can be used. For example, the high-efficiency combustor used according to the invention can make use of gaseous (e.g., natural gas or coal derived gases), liquid (e.g., hydrocarbons, bitumen) and solid (e.g., coal, lignite, pet-coke) fuels.
The US Department of Energy estimates that nearly 84 billion barrels of oil are recoverable using EOR in the US and 500 billion to 1 trillion barrels are recoverable worldwide. However, current sources of CO2 for EOR are only meeting a small fraction of that need, as most industrial CO2 capture technologies cannot produce cost-effective, EOR-ready CO2. NET Power's technology will have both the capacity and economics to enable the EOR industry to unlock this vast resource while simultaneously sequestering large quantities of carbon dioxide below ground.
NET Power, Toshiba Corporation, UK-based Goodwin Steel Castings and The Shaw Group will utilize these advanced materials in NET Power's 25MW natural gas demonstration plant. NET Power CEO Bill Brown said, "Our step-out process leaps over current CCS technologies by producing electricity that generates zero atmospheric emissions and is less expensive than cheap,